While some upward revisions to the CoreLogic’s Home Price Index brought good news for the housing market, the March Labor data indicates that the housing market could have some speedbumps in the future. Good news or bad news first, that’s the question for this week’s breakdown. Let’s rip off the bad news band-aid and dive into the Labor data.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showed an increase of 236,000 jobs. But despite the seemingly strong gain from the numbers reported about a quarter of those were jobs regained in leisure and hospitality after the COVID shutdowns. Now that those jobs have been almost fully regained, they won’t be contributing to the jobs reports much longer. ADP chief economist just stated that “Our March payroll data is one of several signals that the economy is slowing. Employers are pulling back from a year of strong hiring and pay growth, after a three-month plateau, is inching down.”
The ISM Index reported that the manufacturing sector remained in contraction territory for the fifth consecutive month, with a reading of 46.3%. If you’re unfamiliar, this index is derived from a survey of purchasing and supply executives across the country and gives us a good take on the pulse of US Manufacturing. Readings over 50% generally indicate an expanding economy, while sub-50% readings generally indicate a decline.
CoreLogic reported that home prices rose across the country by 0.8% in February, which is double the monthly gain historically seen for the month. CoreLogic's Selma Hepp stated that "prices in most markets have already bottomed out." Time will tell but their forecast shows home prices rising 0.2% in March and 3.7% for the remainder of the year, an upward revision from the 3.1% predicted in January's report.
Inflation data will dominate the economic news for the week as March’s inflation data is reported but we’ll also receive a noteworthy reading of small business optimism, which is a good indication of future economic activity. Stay tuned for next week’s breakdown!
Down Payment Assistance
The most common barrier to homeownership today is saving enough money for a mortgage down payment. We have access to a borrower assistance program that provides up to $2,500 for income-qualified borrowers to use towards the down payment or closing costs required to finance a home.
- Assistance to fund up to 100% of required cash for your down payment or closing costs
- Can be used in conjunction with gift money to meet minimum down payment and closing cost requirements
- Opportunity to re-establish your cash reserves post-closing that can be used for emergencies, maintenance, and other costs associated with the purchase of a home
- May be combined with other down payment assistance programs to give you maximum support
- Homebuyer counseling required ($399 cost to borrower)
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